The lure of Letters

letter envelopesAah the art of letters. I always believed that the best part about letters which is lost in all forms of electronic messaging is that tiny colourful piece of paper that’s glued to the envelope in the corner – yep stamps, and why you may ask. Why, simply because it teaches us so much about the origins of the letter. As a child I loved collecting stamps and its a habit that I still try to keep although its getting to be increasingly difficult to find stamps in this electronic age. To discover that some of the countries whose stamps I have, no longer exist, is quite thrilling indeed. Over time though, the stamps gave way to the persons behind the letters. I began developing a passion for the people who wrote heartfelt letters – baring their soul to the reader; their desires, their anger, their faults, their desperation, their joys…

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Experiencing Amsterdam

Some of the most popular cities in Europe are struggling with heavy influx of tourists such that the locals are now an annoyed lot. Cities are now geared towards catering to tourists – real estate prices are higher, unruly tourists spoil the city, the locals no longer remember their city as theirs. These cities are slowly turning into Disneyland of sorts and in search of authenticity, a traveler has to look beyond the main attractions.


I was recently presented with the wonderful opportunity to explore parts of Netherlands for the first time. There is much to see, much to experience and a lot to cycle in this country but my time was short. Many visitors to this country start and finish their itineraries in Amsterdam. To experience a slightly quieter and a more local experience, I decided to stay during my travels in the medieval city of Haarlem instead and visit Amsterdam as day trips.

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